Bella Tries: the Nu Skin Lumispa™ Cleansing Tool, is it worth the $$$?

Having been exposed to the skin industry since I was 12 years old thanks to my cosmetic dermatologist father, I’ve seen and used my fair share of products. My face is so accustomed to therapeutic salon brands, that over the counter products have little or no effect on my skin anymore. And knowing what I know, I’m a bit conservative with my expectations when it comes to beauty and skincare products in the market, especially something from an MLM company. Not that I don’t trust their products, in fact I think MLM companies put more effort into providing better quality products, it’s the overpricing of their items that really bugs me off. Anyway………..

Lately, there’s been much hype and rave about the Nu Skin’s Lumispa™ Cleansing Tool. And having been recommended by my trusted long time make-up artist friend, I decided to give it a go. Plus, I really have been slacking in the skincare department ever since having 3 kids, lack of sleep and just plain lazy you know LOL, so I thought I’d take a plunge and splurge on this funky looking gadget that promises to improve the overall health of your skin (on your face of course).

SO… what is the Lumispa™?

According to their website, the Lumispa™ is a dermatologist-tested device that gently but deeply cleanses the face with their Micropulse Oscillation technology. With its soft silicone head, it moves at a precise frequency that helps promote faster skin renewal, tighten up enlarged pores, therefore, giving you healthier, more radiant looking skin.

1 step, 2 minutes and 7 benefits is tag line.

“Experience brighter, softer, smoother looking skin and an energising facial massage. Simply spend two minutes twice a day to enjoy healthier, youthful looking skin in as little as two weeks.”

Their patented technology even won the Best Upcoming Skincare & Cleansing Product at the 2018 Biotechnology Award. That’s gotta say something, and it definitely upped their credentials, for me at least.

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Unboxing my new toy just a week or so ago

So….. fast forward a week and 3 days later since the beginning of my Lumispa™ journey, I have been pleasantly surprised by the results. To be honest, I was expecting to be smacked by the husband for being so gullible, as to believing an MLM product could be as good as a salon product. But you know who uses it as routinely as I do now??? Take a guess ROTFLMAO…. Tadaa, the husband uses it every night that he comes back early from work and keeps telling me how clean his face feels. Hah!

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It does look pretty cool, doesn’t it?

The soft silicone head contains anti-microbial silver, is non-abrasive, cleanses deeply into the pores, and moves at precise frequencies for optimum skin renewal process

The ageloc Cleanser. You can choose between normal, combo, oily or dry i think. 

Now before you go diving head in and pressing the “Add to cart” button on their website, I have to tell you that it wasn’t such a smooth journey for me, as compared to my husband. His skin texture has improved quite significantly since his first try of the Lumispa™. Mine, on the other hand, took a few breakouts before my skin got better, and I’m not even sure if it’s solely the effects of the device.

What happened was that 3 days after using the Lumispa™ once a day (at night before bedtime), my whole forehead was filled with tiny little comedones, aka whiteheads. There were a few possibilities that I could think of as to why this occurred. One, it could be that the Lumispa™ somehow stripped off my skin’s natural sebum and the skin is now aggravated; two, I made the mistake of randomly using my mother’s Olay Regenerist moisturiser left in the guest bathroom because I was too lazy to go into my own bathroom for my Sulwhasoo Essential First Care Activating Serum EX that I started using just a couple of months back (a product that was a gift and which by the way, does nothing much for my skin, but that’s a story for another day, and seriously it’s too expensive to just let it sit in the cupboard).

Anyway, back to my story. I had so many tiny bumps on my forehead that it wasn’t funny. Even the hubby asked me to stop. But I persisted because I had a feeling it could have been the moisturiser more than the gadget itself. So like always, I stopped all moisturiser (both Olay and Sulwhasoo) and went back to my trusted Derm10 Comedone and Skin Renewal Complex. Within 2 days, the bumps subsided to just a few spots (seriously, these 2 products are my saviour to any sudden skin imperfections). So I continued with the device and then I began noticing how my skin has actually improved. My nose and cheek areas used to have enlarged pores, but while I was focusing on my breakouts on my forehead, I didn’t realise that my pores are now more refined and less visible.

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The obligatory selfie, right? >< Pardon the blurry picture, blame it on the old iPhone LOL. You can still see some bumps on my forehead though. But overall my skin has improved, and this was taken before I had any make up done.

 

THE VERDICT?

Me: Needless to say, I was impressed. Because I’ve tried many products that claim to help tighten pores to only be left with disappointment. Imagine my surprise when I try pinching my pores, checking to see if any sebum or whitehead emerges, that the congestion was so minimal! Because the pores were smaller, my overall face did somehow look smoother.

The hubby: His face looked brighter, and definitely cleaner than it has been for a long long time. He occasionally needs to be in the restaurant kitchen when we’re understaffed, so his skin gets really oily. The normal cleansing routine of just using a cleanser didn’t exactly helped clean off the impurities and oiliness. By just spending two minutes daily before bedtime and getting good skin, he’s definitely happy using it.

Overall, the results have been pretty positive. However, I honestly wouldn’t make a firm judgement so quickly a of yet though. I’d be interested to see how our skin fares in month’s time.

Is it worth the money spent?

I’d say yes for now, especially for a gadget that is meant for one, but utilised by two. LOL.

 

Do you have a Lumispa™ too? What are your thoughts on it? Is it worth it for you?

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Amblyopia, wait ambly-what?

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It’s heartbreaking to see Big Warrior struggle with her self confidence when it comes to her eye sight problem. 

Poor little darling has Amblyopia, a condition that affects 2-3% of children according to the National Eye Institute. If you don’t know what Amblyopia means, it’s the technical term for Lazy Eye. Usually it means a person has one good eye and one bad eye that rarely gets used because the brain naturally prefers to utilise the good eye, hence the term “lazy” which refers to the bad eye.

Minor cases usually do not affect a person much, but in severe cases when combined with strabismus (crossed eye), the result can affect one for the rest of his/ her life. I should know, because I have amblyopia and exotropia (eye turning outwards). As there never has been any support provided whilst growing up, and no one seem to find it a problematic enough to mention my condition, my own condition wasn’t treated until I was in high school, my eyes are now monocular in vision, which means they operate separately from each other. I know exactly which eye I’m using when looking straight, which is kinda hard to explain to someone with normal binocular vision. LOL.

This condition played a huge part in plummeting my self esteem when trying to socialise or fit in. I was constantly conscious about the ways my eyes were, and found it difficult to look at anyone in the eye, fearing that they would judge me for my imperfection. It is quite obvious whenever I try to focus at something, whether near or far. 

With Big Warrior, we always found she naturally turns to her right whenever focusing on something and have brought her to the optician since she was 2 to see if there’s anything wrong with her eye sight. We were told numerous times that it is something that she’ll grow out of. It wasn’t until she turned 3 1/2 that the optometrist finally agreed that something is amiss, and we were given a referral to Dr Geoffrey Lam, who was at one point of time Perth’s only paediatric opthalmologist

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Image credit: The Australian (Dec 15, 2011)

Dr Lam worked with us for the past 2 years trying to get Big Warrior to improve her eyesight by patching. We were supposed to patch 2 hours daily, but we were having difficulties getting her to fully cooperate on this treatment due to the self consciousness. She is, most of the time, obliging but it took a lot of persuasion and patience to get things going. In the end, we settled for patching every time she watched movies.

It was difficult, being a Steiner/ Waldorf parent, when it comes to the issue of gadgets. We practise minimalism when it comes to technology for the kids. No iPads, no TV, no laptops, no mobile phones, especially during weekdays/ school days. I’m moderate in the sense that the kids still get their movie nights every Friday and Saturday. I believe that preventing them from having any relationship with technology will only create rebellion in the future, so I let them have it on weekends, which is fair to me.

Surprisingly, we managed to survived the past 2 years, and even got through quite a bit of improvement. Her right eye muscle strength improved, from not being able to make out anything that is a mere arm’s length away, to now being able to see (though not so clearly sometimes) things that are 15-20 steps away.  Having said that, it’s still a race against time for us, because the issue would be permanent if her eye condition doesn’t improve enough by the time she turns 8 years old. She has, according to Dr Lam, another 25% improvement to go before her right eye muscles can be deem as fully functional. 

Here I’m praying that she will pull through the next 2 years so that she doesn’t end up like me. Honestly, having people stare at me because how my eyes turn outward isn’t fun. Why I wasn’t given a chance to treat mine is a grudge I hold till now. I know, I know, I need to learn to just let it go, and accept myself for who I am. But sometimes things are easier said than done. I try to be brave and just smile while explaining to someone (when they look at me weird) that I have lazy eyes… but it doesn’t get tiring having to do that all the time, especially when you’re meeting someone for the first time. 

I hope that she’ll learn to forgive me in the future for forcing her to do something she hates now. 😥 

If your child has Amblyopia, don’t ever feel that you’re alone in the battle. There are many moms like me who are facing the same problem. I was trying to avoid the topic as much as I can, but now that I’ve gotten this issue off my chest, I’ll be updating her progress whenever we see Dr Lam, which is about every 4-6 months.

And I personally think she rocks with glasses, no? 💕

P/s: I’ve included Dr Lam’s contact details below, in case anyone needs to see him. You’ll need to get a referral from an optometrist first though.

Dr Geoffrey Lam

8/20 Churchill Ave,

Subiaco,

WA 6008

(08) 9380 9977

 

Bella Tries: Nutra Organics Mermaid Latte

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Ever since I’ve been on latest midlife crisis mode, I’ve been splurging on things that would or could help me feel younger again. Recently, I stumbled upon this interesting drink called Mermaid Latte by Nutra Organics at a health food store. Needless to say, the packaging and name captured my attention first, then the ingredients. LOL.

 

 

A magical drink created with Ayurvedic principles. There’s spirulina (we all know that spirulina is Da Bomb) and sea minerals in it, and of course the Butterfly Pea Flower which gives it the vibrant blue colour; Siberian ginseng, ginger, liquorice and honey for immune function. Sounds awesome, doesn’t it? Let’s see how it turns out……….

 

image2-2The Mermaid Latte powder, reminds me of the Butterfly Pea Flower. It does say there’s no artificial colouring on the package. 

 

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I like my unhomogenised milk unheated, so I decided to mix the powder straight into it to see if it would blend. The package did say that the milk could be slightly heated or chilled. It took longer to blend it, but it did blend nicely in the end, and my milk turned into a beautiful shade of blue.

Now that we’ve agreed that it looks beautiful, what about its taste? Does it taste as good as it looks?

I’d say it’s an acquired taste. But if you’re into spiced tea like me, then you’ll enjoy this superpower punch. There’s a gingery-peppery after taste that gives you the wake-up-now feeling, which was what I needed this morning. I also love the taste of chai and coconut milk with a hint of honey.

While we’re at it, I’m compiled a summary of the benefits of the main ingredients so that you know what’s good for you. 🙂

  1. Coconut Milk – High in saturated fats, which is good for maintaining good cholestrol level, improving blood pressure, preventing dehydration and a rich source of brain food (Read more here)
  2. Manuka Honey – Proven to be anti-viral, anti-inflammatory, and anti-oxidant (Read more here)
  3. Blue superfood – [Copied from Nutra Organic’s website] Sea Mineral Complex is a multi-mineral algae grown on the ocean floor, and is high in bioavailable calcium, magnesium and 72 other trace minerals. Nutra Organic’s Sea Mineral Complex has appeared in a number of scientific studies that have proven it’s ability to support bone, joint & digestive health (Disclaimer: I can’t find any link to those studies. But generally, sea minerals are rich in potassium and magnesium and it promotes the body’s dynamic regenerative system to heal and balances itself. A peer reviewed study can be found here)
  4. Spirulina – [Copied from Nutra Organic’s website] Famous for being one of the most nutrient dense superfood in the world, the Blue Spirulina is the Smurf child of spirulina – it’s literally the blue pigment, also called Phycocyanin, derived from the blue-green algae. It is a powerful antioxidant and supports the bodies response to inflammation. It also helps to detoxify and protect the liver.
  5. Butterfly Pea Flower – [Copied from Nutra Organic’s website] Used mainly in South East Asian countries as a tea, it is a potent source of anthocyanin antioxidants and has been used for centuries in Ayurvedic traditions for its medicinal properties and anti-aging effects.
  6. Adaptogenic Herbs – Great for anti-stress (Read more here)
  7. Ayurvedic Spices – [Copied from Nutra Organic’s website] These spices are traditionally used to enhance digestion and metabolism, lower blood pressure, reduce stress, balance hormones, reduce inflammation, help with sleep, and promote healthy and glowing skin.

With whimsical blues that reminds me of the ocean, and glorious superfood that will make me feel (and hopefully look) beautiful like a freaking mermaid, I’m looking forward to having my beautiful blue morning elixir every morning now!

Find out more about Nutra Organics and their range of products at www.nutraorganics.com

 

 

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Travelogue: Camp5 Indoor Climbing in Malaysia

Recently, we went back to Malaysia to celebrate my dad’s 74th birthday, and of course to have a family holiday. One of the highlights of the trip, was a day out at Camp5 Indoor Climbing in 1Utama Shopping Centre.

At first, I was a little apprehensive letting Big Warrior have a go at it, as with previous experience, adventurous and her just didn’t do well together. She’s been much better and more willing to try new things this year, but I really didn’t want to push it. So the first time we went (with my sister and her kiddos), I let her and Little Warrior watch their cousins in action, and because they were both in skirts, they couldn’t join even if they wanted to. But watching their cousin having all the fun, they made me promise to bring them there again the next time. And I said okay.

So the day came for them to actually have a go. Big Warrior got to do it, but Little Warrior was apparently still too young for it. Minimum age was 4, and she was 3 3/4. Bleh. Oh well, she got to play at the elephant looking climbing rock thingy so it was still okay. We paid RM55 for a whole hour of fun (Try Climbing Session) for Big Warrior, equipped with all the necessary shoes and harness and guide.

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The Elephant looking climbing thingy ;P

 

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This is a snapshot of the page. More info on the session can be found here

 

The best thing about this place? The guide takes your kiddos out of your sight for almost an hour so you get to enjoy your cuppa without having to freight over how high your child is currently climbing at the moment. Out of sight, out of mind, you know? LOL.

 

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Snapshot from their page. The walls that are covered in the Try Climbing Session

 

There were 6 of them for this session, so it ends by the climbers attempting the autowall next to the cafe. There, parents like me, get to finally witness their children in action. I was surprised at how eager she was climbing up the 12m high wall. I mean, being a waldorf child, it’s no surprise she’s done climbing (trees) before. She had some difficulties reaching the top and came down half way. As she made her way to my table, I could see she was slightly disappointed but kept up a brave front and just told me she wanted to have a rest and that she’s probably had enough climbing for the day. So I ordered ice cream for her, and when I brought it back to the table, I was surprised to find her gone. It was then I noticed she was again half way through to the top on the auto wall, this time with a guide next to her. Needless to say, I was very impressed with the amount of encouragement that was given by the guide (slightly regretful I didn’t manage to get the name of the guide). He didn’t have to waste more time entertaining kids you know, but the fact that he came back and encouraged Big Warrior to go up again, and climbing side by side her to show her the ropes (no pun intended LOL) and teaching her the best way to gage which steps to take and balance, I was absolutely grateful. In my life in Malaysia, never had I come across such enthusiasm and smiles when it came to customer service, and especially to a kid at that! Bravo to the people at Camp5!

 

All in all, we had a great day at Camp5. I highly recommend it to anyone who’s in town to drop by. Thank you Camp5 for giving my Big Warrior the day of her life. 🙂

 

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Image credit: http://www.camp5.com

 

Camp5 Indoor Climbing 

EZ501, 5th Floor
1 Utama Shopping Centre,
Bandar Utama, Damansara,
Petaling Jaya 47800
Selangor
Phone: +603 7726 0410
Phone: +603 7726 0420
Fax: +603 7726 0210
Email: 1utama@camp5.com

www.camp5.com

 

Unroyal Bella – A new journey

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Just being a few months shy of turning 35, I’m in sudden panic mode. Okay fine, not so sudden, in fact it’s been going on for a couple of months. Bleh.

You see, I’ve never really been one to waste precious time in front of the mirror, my make up and skincare regime all but takes me a whole 2 minutes. I didn’t even use to wash my face in the morning. My idea of a morning wash is wake up – brush teeth – splash water – wipe face – done. Add that helpful excuse of having 3 kids under 6, yeah, that routine kinda worked for me, and has worked for me for the past 6 years. The most I did was to add a slab of BB cream or foundation, and some eyeliner, that’s it. I don’t even use lipstick, moisturiser, or fragrance.

It doesn’t help that I actually grew up with skincare, because my father was a skincare doctor with a skincare business in Malaysia, and I actually helped out in the skincare manufacturing department for a few years before making the decision to be a full stay at home mom. So the importance of skincare shouldn’t be something new to me, but the advantage of being young back then hasn’t really made me see the crucial importance of it. But now I do. When age is catching up on me, now I finally do.

As of late, I find myself staring at the mirror longer and longer, and noticing how haggard and old-ish I’ve become. Bleh. So I decided to put more effort into my skin and lifestyle, especially after that loooooong pep talk from the husband about how I should learn how to let go and just live, instead of being so uptight about everything in life, but that’s a story for another day. It’s a rather inspiring story, I might add. LOL.

So like I said, I’ve decided to put more effort into taking care of myself, internally and externally to hopefully age gracefully. I mean I do welcome the notion of aging, but not to the point of just letting myself be a premature haggard old lady at 35! Nooooooooooooooo. Having said that, I’m not ready to take the plunge and do something drastic in attempt to look artificially young too you know, but then again who knows what the future holds? LOL. For now, I’m happy to just live a healthier lifestyle, and splurge on things that will help me look good (hopefully the husband isn’t reading this post and won’t focus on the word splurge).

Join me on my #unroyalbella journey and I’ll share my experience on the products I’m trying (what worked and what didn’t), or clothes I’m wearing, and the food I’m eating. All in the name of aging gracefully and living life to the fullest. 😉

 

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